Rich Galen

I know there is absolutely no cause-and-effect in the number of people killing each other in Washington, DC and the availability of hand guns. But, the argument posed by Liberals in the House that any easing of the hand gun laws in the District would lead to wholesale gunfights at the I'm-OK-You're-OK Corral is equal sophistry.

Another minor problem with what the Congress was trying to do was: It was probably Unconstitutional. The Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress wrote in a 2007 issue brief:

"It is difficult to identify either constitutional text or existing case law that would directly support the allocation by statute of the power to vote in the full House to the District of Columbia Delegate."

Furthermore, Utah Senator Orrin Hatch didn't think that adding a temporary At-Large Member from his state (who would likely be a Republican to balance what is assumed to be a Democrat elected from DC) was Constitutional, either.

Utah has three Congressional Districts. Everyone gets to vote for someone in their District to be their Member of Congress. Under the plan which was just withdrawn, everyone in Utah would still have been able to vote for someone in their District plus they would have been able to cast a vote the At-Large candidate - two votes for one person.

Outside of certain sections of Illinois this has never been legal.

The Congress being able to create additional Congressional seats - however temporarily - to suit a current whim is a really dangerous idea.

In any event, the 600,000 people who are residents of the District of Columbia still pay their taxes, but still don't have a voting Member of the House or Senate.

Maybe they're the ones who should have been out demonstrating on April 15th.


Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at Mullings.com.